Tag Archives: Lent

Perfected Love

John 13:12 When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. 13 “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. 14 Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. 15 I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. 16 Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him.

It’s easy to understand the disciples discomfort to see Jesus kneel before them to wash their feet. They were his supporters. Their support, faithfulness and fervor were for him as their Lord and Teacher. Now it was almost like Jesus was purposely switching places with them as he knelt there to show his support for them with his Perfected Love.

Jesus knew they were not yet able to see this truth: their love was going to be perfected too. Everything would depend on their remembering this example Jesus set before them that night. That would be where they would find the courage to face him again. That would be their assurance that only the support of his Perfected Love could begin the perfection of their own love by overcoming the humiliating reality that their fear had triumphed over faithfulness and fervor.

The Reassurance

Isaiah 40:3 – 5. A voice of one calling: “In the wilderness prepare the way for The Lord; make straight in the desert a highway for our God. 4 Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain. 5 And the glory of the Lord will be revealed, and all people will see it together…”

This passage looks very different today in the solemn thoughts of this road leading to the most significant event of the Bible, Easter morning. That’s what makes that one little preposition, “in” so important.
• In – expressing the situation of something that is or appears to be enclosed or surrounded by something else.

“In” December Isaiah’s words were a warning about not allowing the distractions of Christmas to become my something else. Today that little preposition “in” has become The Reassurance that God IS the something else even “in” those distractions.  It could read…
• Look, things are changing. I’m leveling the playing field to give you a better line of sight and access to me. I am “in” those ups and downs and dangers that threaten to enclose you and become the something else. Look for the changes “in”your path that show the glory of who I am…and the reality of who you will be “in” the midst of that place. You’ll see!

Be-ing vs Choosing – The Third Beatitude

Matthew 5:5 Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.

Ponderings:
An interesting word play occurred to me this morning. Are these Be-Attitudes? All Jesus’ blessings are about “Be-ing vs Choosing.”  Word play is not an indication of lack of seriousness especially when it comes to the Word of God. Quite the contrary, it’s an involved mind challenge to consider a meaning that may be deeper than the mere letters that form this known word – meek.

• Meek – adjective: quiet, gentle, and easily imposed on; submissive.
• Synonyms: submissive, yielding, obedient, compliant, tame, biddable, tractable, acquiescent, humble, deferential, timid, unprotesting, unresisting…

The inheritance of land has always been a symbol of security…and power. Way back at the beginning God saw land as a promise and a blessing for his people as he moved them into position to fulfill his plans to make them his heirs on earth.

That’s proved to be tough to work out because “choosing” has become the focus rather than be-ing. That change in focus has resulted in the competition, wars, greed and deceit that plague our world. Jesus says be-ing meek is the answer to the mystery of inheriting this blessing. That’s a mind challenge!

Fallen Through the Cracks

Matthew 5:3 The First Beatitude
3 “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Ponderings:
You’ve probably heard expressions like “high spirited or free spirited. Those expressions describe people whom God has chosen to give personalities that are more demonstrative, more confident of their place in life and are therefore more noticeable.

I doubt you’ve ever even noticed anyone you’d call “poor in spirit.” Maybe that’s why God has chosen this apparently very small group to be His number one focus. He noticed them precisely because their life is not about depending on their own spirit at all. Somehow they’ve Fallen Through the Cracks of praise and attention in our world but  they’ve caught a glimpse of a different kingdom and another Spirit that sustains them.